Thank God for ‘Doubting’ Thomas!

The reading for this Sunday, the first after Easter, is John 20:19-end which tells the story of how St. Thomas was invited by Christ to touches wounds and told ‘Do not count but believe’. Yet somehow he is still known as ‘doubting’ Thomas, but maybe honest Thomas, courageous Thomas, even Tenacious Thomas would be nearer the mark!
I thank God for St. Thomas, the one disciple who had the courage to say what everyone else was thinking but didnt dare say, the courage to ask the awkward questions that drew from Jesus some of the most beautiful and profoundly comforting of all his sayings. “We dont know where you’re going, how can we know the way”? asked Thomas, and because he had the courage to confess his ignorance, we were given that beautiful saying “I am the way the Truth and the Life” Here is the poem I have written for St. Thomas, and also a sermon called ‘Touching the Wounds’ .

This sonnet is drawn from my collection Sounding the Seasons, published by Canterbury Press here in England. The book is now back in stock on both Amazon UK and USA . The book is now also out on Kindle. Please feel free to make use of these sonnets in church services and to copy and share them. If you can mention the book from which they are taken that would be great.

I am greateful to Margot Krebs Neale for the thought-provoking image above, you can hear the poem by clicking on the ‘play’ button below or on the title of the poem and you can hear the sermon on my podcast site by clicking here: Touching The Wounds

St. Thomas the Apostle


“We do not know… how can we know the way?”

Courageous master of the awkward question,

You spoke the words the others dared not say

And cut through their evasion and abstraction.

Oh doubting Thomas, father of my faith,

You put your finger on the nub of things

We cannot love some disembodied wraith,

But flesh and blood must be our king of kings.

Your teaching is to touch, embrace, anoint,

Feel after Him and find Him in the flesh.

Because He loved your awkward counter-point

The Word has heard and granted you your wish.

Oh place my hands with yours, help me divine

The wounded God whose wounds are healing mine.


oh place my hands with yours, help me divine
the wounded God whose wounds are healing mine


Filed under christianity, literature, St. Edward's

8 responses to “Thank God for ‘Doubting’ Thomas!

  1. Mary Ferris

    I love your Sonnets very much and shared them with many friends and bought the book for some. Met you at Exeter Cathedral at Holy Ground last year. .Mary Ferris.

    Sent from my iPad


  2. Mary Ferris

    I love the Sonnets and have shared them with many friends and bought the book for some.
    I met you at Exeter Cathedral last year at Holy Ground.
    Thank you for such beautiful writing.
    Mary Ferris.

  3. Marilyn Griffin

    This one especially touched me. Like Thomas, I have a tendency to voice what everyone else is thinking but too scared to ask. I completely love this poem. It strummed a chord deep within my heart.

  4. Thank you for providing this alternate glimpse to a story too often seen as a condemnation of lack of faith, rather than courage to ask the “awkward questions”.

  5. Erika Hoffmann

    Thank you, Malcolm. Thomas has been a great comfort to many, and yes, he was brave enough to ask. The last two lines of this sonnet lead to deep contemplation. Is your sermon available for reading?

  6. Milton Finch

    Thank you, Malcolm, for making yourself open to seeing Him with fresh and beautiful eyes. “Beautiful are the feet…”

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